According to Boeing, the global fleet will almost double in less than two decades, with Asia leading the process and outstripping North America by approx. 4000 new airplanes. Along with the new aircraft deliveries the number of pilots in the Asian-Pacific region will increase by up to 183 000 while in North America the growth in demand should not exceed 83 000. With the new global aviation centres emerging in the Eastern parts of the world, the demand for flight crew fluctuates depending on different regions.
Emirates Airlines are planning to hire more than 4000 flight crew members across the world in 2012. The representatives from China’s aviation industry have recently held a major job fair in the United States. Saudi Arabian Airlines have launched an advertisement campaign aimed at hiring 120 new pilots. These are only a couple of examples that demonstrate how the Eastern markets are trying to deal with the already obvious issues of the local flight crew supply chain.
‘Today the Asian-Pacific and some other regions cannot handle the flight crew demand on their own. The situation on the local pilot market is well represented by the recent Air India Express recruitment campaign, which was aimed at hiring several dozens of pilots, with a clear preference to candidates from India. Well, they didn’t manage to recruit even a quarter of the required total,’ commented the CEO of AviationCV.com Skaiste Knyzaite.
Meanwhile, on the opposite side of the world some airlines are reducing the number of flight crew members. In November 2011 the airline holding company AMR Corporation filed for bankruptcy. Under the Chapter 11 of US Bankruptcy Code, the AMR Corporation, the parent company of American Airlines and American Eagle, will undergo the reorganization process which, according to Bloomberg, may result in huge layoffs. Some other US airlines have filed for the Chapter 11 bankruptcy twice during the last ten years, followed by either job or pay cuts for the pilots.
Today the American pilots may find their career in certain stagnation, since some pilots have been working on the same aircraft or in the same position for more than a decade with only vague possibilities of a promotion in the near future. The Asian Pacific region, on the other hand, may offer foreign pilots far better career opportunities, with higher salaries and way more opportunities to switch to another aircraft.
‘However, the US aviation industry is also expanding and thus, eventually, will require more pilots. But the American careers will have to change their employment policy and recruitment strategy in order to compete with the Chinese, Indian or other employers from the East, since it is the ASPAC airlines that are the trend-setters in the pilot market today,’ concluded the CEO of AviationCV.com.
AviationCV.com, part of aviation business group Avia Solutions Group, is the only pilot leasing company in Eastern Europe and the Baltic states. It offers flight crew resourcing and training/retraining as well as short-term and long-term crew lease services to airlines in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.